BREAKING: Sound of Freedom director teases sequel focusing on Haiti

"There's a lot of interest to kind of explore Haiti, what's happening in Haiti."

Katie Daviscourt Seattle WA
During a recent interview with Variety, the writer and director of widely acclaimed independent film Sound of Freedom revealed that a sequel might be in the works.

Alejandro Monteverde told the magazine that he has been in discussions about writing a sequel to the smash hit film, which would be focused on child sex trafficking in Haiti.

"There's definitely a lot of interest to exploring [the subject] a little deeper, because this is just the tip of the iceberg. There's a lot of interest to kind of explore Haiti, what's happening in Haiti. There's [sequel] talks focusing on Haiti," Monteverde said.

The Sound of Freedom became the highest-grossing independent film since 2019 following its initial release in July, earning more than $173 million. The film tells the story of a former government agent, Tim Ballard, who started an organization to fight child sex trafficking in Colombia. It stars Jim Caviezel, who plays Ballard as he embarks on a mission to rescue children who have arguably been subjected to the worst of crimes.

The film has been dismissed by mainstream media and other left-wing critics as a "conspiracy," however; the Sound of Freedom is based on a true story about Ballard's organization, Operation Underground Railroad, and a real mission where his team saved 55 children and 123 people in total.

Monteverde dispelled misconceptions about the film to Variety and criticized mainstream media for avoiding the film, suspecting that they have done so on purpose.

“The origin [of the film] has been avoided, purposely or accidentally, in the media,” Monteverde said. “The origin will answer a lot of these misconceptions on the film.”

The film writer explained that he got the idea for the movie after watching a news segment about child sex trafficking, saying that what he learned "shook my soul because I didn't really believe it [existed]."

"I just, in my head, could not put those two pieces together — an adult and a child," he told Variety.

Feeling the need to take action against this atrocity, Monteverde began to write a fictional screenplay called "The Mogul." When the film's producer, Eduardo Verástegui, had met Tim Ballard, the two decided to change the direction of the film and base it on the true story of Ballard's time working as a former special agent for the Department of Homeland Security, in which he has deployed as an undercover operative for the US Child Sex Tourism Jump Team, Variety reports.

Monteverde told the reporter that the film had been finished years before QAnon conspiracy theorists sprung into the spotlight.

"All I wanted was to present a question about the problem: human trafficking, child trafficking, child sexual exploitation. How bad the problem is. We shot in 2018. In 2019, it was a completely finished film [before QAnon became a phenomenon]," he said.

The director said the negative press surrounding the film was "heartbreaking."

"It was like really sick. I was like, 'This is all wrong. That's not true.' It was heartbreaking when I saw all this polemic and all this controversy going on. My instinct was to run. I want to hide. I don't want to give any more interviews," Monteverde said.

"Before the movie came out, I did a couple of interviews. Look, when you hire people, what they do on the free time, I can’t control. I was a director. I wrote the screenplay. I hired the actor I thought was the best for this film. The subject matter was very personal to him. [Caviezel] adopted three children from China. When we met and discussed the project, he broke down in tears. And I was like, ‘Wow, this guy’s gonna be willing to die on the set.’ And that’s what you want, you know? You want somebody who works for you. And he dove in," he explained.

On why the sequel would be focused on Haiti, Monteverde said, "Haiti was a big part of Tim's work. I was very tempted to do Haiti on this film. But I wanted to do an origin story, and it was too much material. I needed to end where I ended."
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